Satan’s Coming ‘Round the Bend

Tribute albums are so overdone that it takes an extremely special one to command my attention, let alone buy. Especially a tribute to Black Sabbath. The Nativity in Black tribute albums in the 1990s really kicked the metal tribute album fad into high gear, and anyone attempting to pull off a similar tribute album now […]

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The 2017 Album of the Year

                      1. Zola Jesus, Okovi (Sacred Bones) Nika Rosa Danilova has been flirting with greatness for the past decade, her unique blend of darkwave and Kate Bush-derived art pop establishing her as a burgeoning talent over the course of five albums. She’s come close, from […]

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The Best Tracks of 2017, #6

6. Zola Jesus, “Siphon” I can’t remember hearing as eloquent, compassionate song about attempted suicide as what Nika Rosa Danilova has composed in the form of “Siphon”. It conveys a strong sense of urgency and tension, but for all the dark undertones lies a sense of support and positivity that steadily takes over the song. […]

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The Best Tracks of 2017, #13

13. Zola Jesus, “Soak” Nika Rosa Danilova mentioned on NPR that she wrote the ominous track “Soak” from the perspective of a serial killer’s victim. “I started to do thought experiments of what it would feel like to be a killer’s victim. What would I feel in those last minutes before my life was taken […]

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The Best Singles of 2013, #13

Zola Jesus, “Fall Back” Nika Roza Danilova’s finest song to date is also her simplest. A straightforward love song, it nevertheless conveys a level of passion that she was never able to fully convey on any previous Zola Jesus album, thanks in large part to a stirring strings arrangement by collaborator JG Thirlwell for the […]

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The Best Albums of 2013, #19

Zola Jesus, Versions Nika Roza Danilova fits in the very specific, weird template for women singer-songwriters that I have such a weakness for: a predilection for dark tones and themes, a combination of detachment and soul, theatricality yet an innate pop sensibility, poeticism that’s both arch and accessible. However, there’s no denying that after a […]

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